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Mobility managers

Bologna

Bologna is eager to cut down on traffic and get more people to travel around the city by bike or public transport. Mobility management has proven a promising tool that the city wants to support and grow.

Implementing sustainable mobility

Bologna has good experiences with mobility management (MM) and is keen to build on this success. Italian national law makes it mandatory for companies with more than 300 employees to get a mobility manager to reduce employees’ car dependency.  The city will involve companies with less than 300 employees that are located in the historical city centre or other key areas, as well. It will draw on new communication tools and specifically target young people to address both parents’ and children’s daily trips from home to school or work and back.

The objectives of the measure are to:

  • Increase the number of companies that have a MM plan;
  • Increase the number of employees involved in MM policy;
  • Improve support for companies that promote sustainable modes of transport;
  • Promote new agreements with transport operators to influence employees’ mobility habits in favour of sustainable modes; and
  • Gain a better understanding of and influence commuter travel choices in favour of sustainable mobility.

Before the start of CIVITAS MIMOSA, Bologna had set up a Mobility Management office for its urban area that was given the task to elaborate the municipal mobility plan and to support companies in their mobility management.  The city has made free software available to manage data on employees’ trips to work and back. It also provides online questionnaires to collect information on employees’ mobility habits. Based on this data, companies can develop better mobility plans.

Thanks to these efforts, mobility managers have become increasingly established in many organisations in the Bologna area. Along with the rise in mobility managers, there has been a strong increase in the use of public transport following an agreement with the local public transport company (ATC) and the national railway operator (Trenitalia) that made it possible to cut the costs for annual transport passes. The number of annual public transport owners subsequently increased from 617 to 5,622 in 2004 and to 6,683 in 2005. Train use has also risen by about 10 percent.  On 19 September, 2006, Bologna, ATC and Trenitalia have reached another agreement that has been in force until 2009. This agreement provided a 5 percent discount on the annual public transport pass for all employees of companies that have a mobility agreement with the municipality.

How did the measure progress?

The measure was officially launched in February 2010 at the 10th National Conference on Mobility Management, event organised by the municipality in cooperation with Euromobility (the national association of mobility managers) and the Emilia Romagna Region (RER) with sponsorship from the Ministry for the environment. In June 2010, Bologna commenced an innovative employee cycling scheme of 100 dedicated bike racks alongside free electric charging points for municipal employees. In addition, municipal employees can purchase electric bikes at a discount.
During the European Mobility Week in September 2010, information activities were carried out. These included an information point service that assisted people in identifying the best cycling routes for their daily trips from home to school or work. A two-day initiative addressed municipal employees and those of the Emilia Romagna region who cycle to work.
In cooperation with the Public Transport company ATC and Emilia Romagna Region, an open meeting on “New Resources for New Projects” took place during which Bologna’s new sustainable mobility project was presented focusing on Mobility Management activities. Some relevant projects (funded outside MIMOSA) linked up with MM actions have also been approved by the Italian Ministry of environment:
- €95,229 (out of a total budget of €366,000 total budget) have been allocated to ten companies as a contribution for their employees to purchase PT season tickets at a discount;
- €96,810 (out of a total budget of €99,000) have been assigned to eight companies to develop mobility management projects, specifically related to cycling and software dedicated to MM;
- in the framework of the “Fiera District” project, the Municipality of Bologna signed an agreement with RER, co-financing the MM area project with €56,000;
- Bologna gave contributions to municipal employees for the purchase of public transport season tickets (Mobility Eco-Ticket) at a discount.
In April 2011, the municipality of Bologna held a meeting to update Mobility Managers on MM activities and services available in the city and to go ahead with the project co-financed by the Italian Ministry for the environment. In September 2011, RER organised the international conference “Mobility Management: From European projects to regional actions” targeted at professionals in the field and politicians. The Municipality of Bologna launched a framework for companies to receive new funds reserved for MM plans.
As a result of these actions, in 2010-2011 1,625 employees of Bologna Municipality (31.2%) received contributions to purchase public transport season tickets at a discount (1.5% more than in 2009/ 2010). Two new mobility management agreements were signed with companies. Three Home-Work MM plans were activated.

During European Mobility Weeks 2009-2010-2011-2012, several initiatives were devoted to increase employees’ environmental awareness. Information services were provided to help people choose the best home-school or home-work route by bicycle; a two-day initiative took place for Bologna Municipality’s and Emilia Romagna Region’s employees, who normally cycle to work, offering repair workshops for bicycles.
According to the updated figures, 11.291 discounted LPT season tickets were issued in 2011 in the framework of the different MM plans implemented by the Municipality and the Province of Bologna, the University, the Health Care Authority (including Public Hospitals and ambulatories) and about 40 private firms.  Referring to MM on-going plans, 42 companies in Bologna (corresponding to around 50.000 workers) have already nominated their mobility managers, 24 companies (which involve 41.000 workers) have approved their home-work mobility plans, 14 companies have signed MM agreements (which affect 28.000 workers), while 8 companies (10.000 workers) are going to renew their previously implemented MM agreements.
The Municipality of Bologna has gone one step further and provided its employees with electric bicycles for home-work trips while offering all citizens incentives to purchase electro-bikes in 2011. So successful was this measure, it has been extended to 2012. Up to now about 900 electric bikes have been purchased.

What were the outcomes of the measure?

In designing the measure, expected results were to:
- Involve at least 10 additional companies in MM procedures;
- Decrease the use of private motorised transport by 20 percent among employees involved in MM plans; and
- Increase the use of public transport and cycling by 20 percent.

Three key results show the positive effects of the measure in terms of pollution emissions and a shift from private vehicle to public transport. The share of travellers using public transport (buses and trains) increased between 2003 and 2010 by 3.4%. During MIMOSA, PT subscriptions sold under the Mobility Management agreements increased by 50% (7.603 units were sold in 2007, 11,413 in 2011). This means 4,000 users refrained from using their own private car, which is an impressive result from a single measure. As a result, emissions reduced by 35% compared to 2008 (average value of all pollutant types), with 5 tons CO2 per year saved.

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